Today I am going to be reviewing Take in the Good: Skills for Staying Positive and Living Your Best Life by Gina Beigel. I received an ARC (Advanced Reader Copy) of this book from NetGalley. You can read more about what NetGalley is and how it works here. This book was just released on the 7th January. It is a non-fiction, YA book for teenagers, aimed at helping them to stay positive and utilise certain skills for coping with difficult times. As with every review, I am going to be very honest. I cannot spoil this for you because it is non-fiction. I’m just going to discuss my thoughts and if I feel it’s worth checking out. Without further ado, let’s get into it!
WHAT THIS BOOK DOES RIGHT
This book is very bright, colourful and full of interactive activities (unfortunately with ARC’s, you cannot see these, so all I saw was pink/blue blobs). It requires a journal as there are many writing prompts for the reader to complete. I really enjoy introspective books that require some participation. There is a big emphasis on self-care and taking time for yourself to re-charge from the world around you. I like that it preaches self-love and mindfulness. These are very useful tools for both adolescents and adults alike.
WHAT THIS BOOK DOES WRONG
In my personal opinion, this book does a lot more wrong than right. My biggest issue with it, was that it wasn’t relatable at all to teenagers. In fact, the language was quite cringe-worthy at times. In one section, the author discusses creating a playlist called Happy Jams and Depressing Dives. I thought that was too corny. It also never took depression into account. These activities could work on mentally stable kids, but those suffering with depression or anxiety or a host of other disorders cannot just ‘be happy’ or ‘think positively’, like the book suggests. It doesn’t do enough to encourage help. This is why I felt it was not relatable. Furthermore, the activities themselves were all over the place. There are so many different, confusing acronyms to remember that they all became one big blur to me in the end. I struggled to connect with any of it because the structure was so convoluted. There are symbols that require you to Take Action (journal or do an activity) and ones that ask you to Takeaway (remember for later). This seems like a good way to order everything, but it’s just a massive load of information-dumping. The concepts the author introduces are very technical (for example, neuro-plasticity) and again, not helpful to those with illnesses. Maybe if I could’ve seen the prompts/activities, I would’ve enjoyed the book more, but I still felt it was too chaotic and dismissive for my taste.
OVERALL STAR RATING
I’m sorry to say I gave this 1.5/5 stars. If you want something light, fluffy and cheesy, I would recommend it. Otherwise, I would not use this as a self-help book. I have read plenty of others that are much more relatable and inclusive.
If you are interested, you can order a copy here.
I hope you enjoyed this honest review. I have two more NetGalley reviews coming up in the next couple of weeks. Don’t worry, they are a lot more positive (ironically!). Let me know your thoughts down below. I appreciate all feedback. Thanks for reading!
Peace & Love xoxo
Disclaimer: This post contains links to my Book Depository Affiliate which helps fund my blog, I am not being paid or sponsored for this post/products – all my thoughts/opinions are my own